In November 2021, Calgary City Council voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency. Mayor Gondek was quoted “It is a matter of making sure that we understand the reality of the table stakes that are declaring a climate emergency, so we can actually attract capital and talent here.”
According to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, cities account for roughly half of all carbon dioxide emissions in Canada. Calgary City Council must do its part and implement a plan for net zero emissions with the City of Calgary.
Calgary City Council must make good on their Climate Emergency declaration and approve the Climate Strategy on July 5.
Smoke from BC wildfires on September 16, 2020, showed that we are already experiencing the effects of climate change. (Photo by Bob Hawkesworth).
On July 5, City Council will vote on the proposed Climate Strategy
The City has declared a climate emergency and set a net-zero carbon emissions target by 2050, now we need a plan to get there. The existing Climate Resilience Strategy, adopted in 2018, has a weak target of only an 80 per cent reduction from 2005 levels.
Administration has proposed a new Climate Strategy. it would set an overall direction for how Calgary could achieve net-zero carbon emissions, and adapt to the effects of climate change that we are already experiencing. Incredibly, some members of Council are opposed to even having a plan.
Having a Climate Strategy will allow Calgary to take advantage of federal funding
The federal government has indicated that it will devote up to $90 billion to climate change across Canada. In order to access that money, Calgary needs to have a strong climate strategy to show that we are serious about doing our part to address climate change.
Taking action on climate change will have an economic benefit for Calgary
Globally, investors are looking to do business in areas that have strong climate plans. Already, many of the oil companies downtown have declared net-zero carbon emissions targets. Encouraging Calgary’s growing green tech sector will help diversify our economy to get away from the boom/bust cycle. Retrofitting buildings will provide jobs in the construction industry. Transitioning to a low-carbon economy could create over 160,000 jobs and generate over $60 billion by 2050.
The Climate Strategy will help save Calgarians money in the long run
- The City estimates that getting to net-zero energy generation could save Calgarians between $60-80 billion in energy costs by 2050. [p.8]
- Failure to address climate change is expensive. Estimates are that the impact of severe climate events on infrastructure, economy and health care could cost $2.6 billion every year by 2050.
- Insurable losses have already ballooned from between $250-$450 million per year to an average of $1.91 billion per year. Calgarians are paying increased insurance premiums because of these losses. Insurance bills will only go up.
Temporary flood protection berm in Sunnyside, June 14, 2022
Calgarians want action on climate change
A poll showed that 63% of Calgarians believe Calgary’s future as a vibrant city is at risk if we do not become a leader in addressing climate change. Calgary is well-positioned to take action. 80% of Calgarians believe that with our experience in the oil and gas industry, Calgary has the necessary resources to become a global leader in addressing renewable energy. Please sign this petition to show your support and to join this majority!